U.S. Marines Train Afghan National Police

HELMAND PROVINCE, Afghanistan, Sept. 1, 2011 — Marine Corps instruc­tors at the Joint Sus­tain­ment Acad­e­my South­west at Camp Leath­er­neck here are train­ing an elite group of Afghan police in a first-of-its-kind pro­gram.

Afghan Nation­al Police Sgt. Sayed Mohsin, a basic train­ing instruc­tor, observes and advis­es a police trainee dur­ing marks­man­ship train­ing on the rifle range at Region­al Train­ing Cen­ter Bamyan, Afghanistan, Aug. 22, 2011.
U.S. Air Force pho­to by Senior Air­man Kat Lynn Justen
Click to enlarge

At the Provin­cial Response Com­pa­ny Course, or PRC, select­ed Afghan law enforce­ment offi­cers are learn­ing the skills required to engage ter­ror­ists, con­duct hostage res­cue oper­a­tions and fight heav­i­ly armed crim­i­nals in urban envi­ron­ments. “The PRC unit’s train­ing gives it the abil­i­ty to respond at a moment’s notice and to han­dle sit­u­a­tions out­side the realm of the reg­u­lar [Afghan Uni­formed Police’s] capa­bil­i­ties,” said Marine Corps 1st Lt. Thomas L. Mal­one, a JSAS team leader and a native of Glen Burnie, Md.

“They will pro­vide the provin­cial police chief a quick-reac­tion force for high-risk sit­u­a­tions,” Mal­one added.

The six-week course rein­forces and pro­vides advanced train­ing in shoot­ing, self-defense, first aid, anti-ter­ror­ism, riot con­trol, ethics and law.

The train­ing is cur­rent­ly admin­is­tered by a rota­tion of eight Marine instruc­tors, 12 inter­preters and two AUP class lead­ers.

“At the end of class there is no final exam,” Mal­one said. “How­ev­er, there is a final exer­cise planned which tests knowl­edge reten­tion by hav­ing stu­dents per­form through a series of real­is­tic train­ing sce­nar­ios.”

The instruc­tors hold stu­dents to a high stan­dard from the begin­ning of class until grad­u­a­tion by test­ing them reg­u­lar­ly on all mate­r­i­al pre­sent­ed in the course, said Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Charles Spencer, a PRC course instruc­tor and a native of Bing­ham­ton, N.Y.

To help in the urban train­ing mis­sions, the instruc­tors make use of the academy’s “shoot house.” There, stu­dents learn to breach a secured com­pound and maneu­ver against oppo­nents, clear­ing rooms in two- and four-man teams.

“Class exer­cis­es in find­ing impro­vised explo­sives devices and con­duct­ing vehi­cle [and] per­son­nel search­es, along with mak­ing arrests, are my favorite parts of the course,” said Abdul Mobin, an Afghan police­man cur­rent­ly attend­ing the PRC course.

The train­ing also stress­es the lead­er­ship skills required in small teams and police units.

“We will be pro­mot­ing some of the class non-com­mis­sioned offi­cers based on their per­for­mance in the course,” said Marine Corps 1st Lt. Joshua Oresko, lead instruc­tor and team men­tor for the PRC course and a native of Crown Point, Ind.

Stu­dents will be well-trained and pre­pared to oper­ate in the field when they grad­u­ate in Sep­tem­ber, Spencer said.

U.S. Depart­ment of Defense
Office of the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary of Defense (Pub­lic Affairs)

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